Monday, November 23, 2020

Spying with Vacuum Cleaner LiDAR

National University of Singapore presents a paper "Spying with your robot vacuum cleaner: eavesdropping via lidar sensors" by Sriram Sami, Yimin Dai, Sean Rui Xiang Tan, Nirupam Roy, and Jun Han.

"This paper presents LidarPhone, a novel acoustic side-channel attack through the lidar sensors equipped in popular commodity robot vacuum cleaners. The core idea is to repurpose the lidar to a laser-based microphone that can sense sounds from subtle vibrations induced on nearby objects. LidarPhone carefully processes and extracts traces of sound signals from inherently noisy laser reflections to capture privacy sensitive information (such as speech emitted by a victim's computer speaker as the victim is engaged in a teleconferencing meeting; or known music clips from television shows emitted by a victim's TV set, potentially leaking the victim's political orientation or viewing preferences). We implement LidarPhone on a Xiaomi Roborock vacuum cleaning robot and evaluate the feasibility of the attack through comprehensive real-world experiments. We use the prototype to collect both spoken digits and music played by a computer speaker and a TV soundbar, of more than 30k utterances totaling over 19 hours of recorded audio. LidarPhone achieves approximately 91% and 90% average accuracies of digit and music classifications, respectively."

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